Traverse City Events: Now that the bird's been carved, we're on to the month of rosy-cheeked holiday cheer! Kids and adults of all ages— bundle up and head downtown for the magic of the season.

Santa’s Arrival, Tree Lighting & Holiday Open House

Friday, November 30

Celebrate the spirit of the season in Downtown Traverse City on Friday, November 30 with the excitement of Santa’s Arrival.  Spend the evening with Santa and shopping throughout the unique shops in Downtown Traverse City. At 5 pm, shoppers will be serenaded with holiday music and can gather at the community trees at the corner of Cass and E. Front St. Attendees can join in a community sing-a-long of their favorite holiday carols accompanied by the Grand Traverse Chorus.  The excitement continues with Santa’s arrival in a classic car provided by Hagerty and escorted by the percussion section at TC West High School. Santa will join in the carols, receive the Key to the City from the Traverse City Mayor, Michael Estes and then light the tree at 6 pm, before spending the rest of the evening (6-9 p.m.) visiting with little ones at his holiday house at Cass and E. Front Street.  Horse & Carriage Rides will be provided by Abraham Carriage Service from 6:30 to 9 pm.

Bringing a little bit of the melody to Downtown Traverse City, The Petoskey Steel Drum Band will be performing at the corner of Cass and E. Front from 6:15 to 9 pm. You won’t want to miss the amazing sounds that this youth troupe will evoke.

Ice on Display! Eight ice sculptures created by former World Champion and Traverse City resident Steven Berkshire will be on display throughout Front St. Park Place Hotel  and a live ice carving demonstration will take place from 6 to 8 pm.

Live Reindeer will be located for little ones to enjoy in front of Red Ginger, while next door, the State Theatre will be offering FREE Holiday cartoons at 6:45 pm.

Share the spirit of the season with family and friends while merchants throughout the Downtown district host open houses and in-store specials.  Participating stores will have extended evening hours and offer store specials, free gift wrapping, food, refreshments and more!

As a contribution to the Traverse City’s holiday celebrations, Traverse City Light & Power will install over 130,000 LED holiday lights on the trees lining the streets of Downtown Traverse City.

Santa’s Arrival is sponsored by Traverse City Light & Power and the Traverse City Downtown Development Authority.

Ladies’ Night

Thursday, December 6

Downtown Traverse City will be hosting Ladies Night, Thursday, December 6 from 5 to 9 pm. Visit participating stores for specials, refreshments, prize drawings, free gift wrapping and more! Caroling throughout the evening with the Grand Traverse Chorus. 

Men’s Night Downtown

Thursday, December 13

Gentlemen, the evening is yours, finally! Celebrate and shop with friends during Men’s Night Downtown on Thursday, December 13.  The gents can enjoy hors d’oeuvres and specials at many restaurants and merchants will be offering in-store specials, gift wrapping and drawings. Caroling throughout the evening with the Grand Traverse Chorus. 

Downtown Gift Certificates Make the Perfect Gift!

Don’t forget to keep your dollars local this holiday shopping season, Downtown Gift Certificates Make the Perfect Gift! Certificates may be purchased at the Downtown Office, Hardy Parking Deck, TC State Bank (Downtown Branch) TC Convention & Visitors Bureau and Call 922.2050 and your order may be prepared in advance for easy pick up! In 2011, the Downtown Traverse City Association was able to sell over $318,000 in Downtown Gift Certificates and hopes to achieve a new record in 2012.

Santa’s Hours

Santa will be visiting with little ones in his house at the corner of Cass and E. Front throughout the holiday season.

Friday: 11/30: 6 – 9 pm

Fridays: 12/7, 12/14, 12/21: 5 – 8 pm

Saturdays: 12/1, 12/8, 12/15, 12/22: 11 am – 4 pm

Sundays: 12/2, 12/9, 12/16, 12/23: 1 – 4 pm

Extended hours: 12/19 & 12/20: 3 – 7 pm

Parking  – Free and Easy!

The price is right for downtown parking this holiday season. Parking is free at the Larry C. Hardy and Old Town Parking Decks (Ground Floor) after 5 pm, Monday through Friday and all day on Saturday and Sunday.

Please contact the Downtown Traverse City Association at 922-2050 or e-mail for further information.

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